Terrorism, Chivalry, and “The Great Compromise” | Abbeville Institute

The ongoing purge from the South of Confederate symbols also reflects the triumph of Brown’s totalitarian utopianism over novelist-historian Shelby Foote’s “Great Compromise.”

Source: Terrorism, Chivalry, and “The Great Compromise” | Abbeville Institute

I have used, on a number of occasions and in a number of fora, the term “Great Compromise” or “Great Truce” to describe the situation that existed between the South and the rest of the United States from approximately the time of the Spanish-American War until fairly recently – certainly until the 1960s, and arguably (in somewhat more attenuated form) until 2015, when the current age of persecution of all things traditionally Southern and Confederate began.

But if I ever knew it had been originated by author and historian Shelby Foote, I had long forgotten it. In any case, an excellent article on the subject, and on our current distressing state of affairs, by the Abbeville Institute!

“For those unfamiliar with Foote’s expression, the term Great Compromise here refers to an unspoken understanding which supplemented the formal peace treaty signed by the opposing generals at Appomattox.

“The idea was that Southerners would accept the reality of their defeat and render dutiful service to the Union, especially in the military, even as Northerners agreed to honor Southern heroes and admitted that Southern culture and principles had made valuable contributions to America’s development.

“As a result, former Confederate general Joseph Wheeler served in the United States Army during the Spanish-American War, while the Kansas-born President Eisenhower generously praised Robert E. Lee as a man ‘selfless almost to a fault and unfailing in his faith in God.'”

That we seem to have lost that sense is one of the great tragedies of the contemporary era. As this essay points out,

“A case can be made that American society is becoming increasingly coarse, sordid, and perverse precisely because America’s leaders have in recent years decided to define the South as ‘the Other.’

“The result of defining America in opposition to the South has been the rejection of Southern values like honor, Biblical tradition, forms and courtesy, and deference toward the female sex and its unique role in sustaining civilization.

“Likewise, the large-scale rejection of Southern political ideals – states’ rights and decentralization, rurally-rooted republicanism, modest and constitutionally-restrained government – has played no small part in transforming American politics into what could be best described as a cold civil war.”

Read the whole essay. It’s worth it!

Author: The Anglophilic Anglican

I am an ordained Anglican clergyman, published writer, former op-ed columnist, and experienced outdoor and informal educator. I am also a traditionalist: religiously, philosophically, politically, and socially. I seek to do my bit to promote and restore the Good, the True, and the Beautiful, in a world which has too-often lost touch with all three, and to help re-weave the connections between God, Nature, and humankind which our techno-industrial civilization has strained and broken.

4 thoughts on “Terrorism, Chivalry, and “The Great Compromise” | Abbeville Institute”

  1. Excellent! Thank you for raising up this great essay.
    We find the purging of all things Southern in all sorts of places. I was looking through the 2020 edition of The Old Farmer’s Almanac and noticed that in the “Holidays and Observances” section of the Almanac, there is “Cinco de Mayo”, Truman Day, Bennington Battle Day, Leif Eriksson Day, Will Rogers Day, Cesar Chavez Day, and a host of others, but Confederate Memorial Day is nowhere to be found. This is a legal holiday in eleven Southern states, and commemorates the death of untold thousands of Southern men who fought to defend their native land. That Cesar Chavez should rank higher in importance is a national disgrace. I sent an email to the Almanac asking that this be corrected. I have yet to receive a reply even though it was specifically requested.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. As a follow-up, I have received a reply:
        ===================================
        Thank you for your feedback and for caring so much. As the oldest, continuously published periodical in North America, we have chronicled the history of our nation (since 1792); we do not seek to erase it.

        As you suggest, different states observe a holiday to commemorate various Confederate heroes and soldiers on different dates, and under different holiday titles. Up until 2019, we had included Robert E. Lee Day, which is observed in a few states. We have received feedback in recent years from readers who were disappointed that we had even just that one mention of a Confederate holiday. Many of these readers felt that we were insensitive, anti-American, and condoning slavery.

        We continue to evaluate the list of “Holidays and Observances.” Every year, entries are reviewed; space on the page is also a consideration.

        Thank you again for your interest in The Old Farmer’s Almanac, and for taking the time to share your thoughts.

        Sincerely,
        Heidi
        The Old Farmer’s Almanac team
        =================================
        I have mixed feelings about their reply. On the one hand, they are a business and in this to make a profit. If they believe that their customers are either opposed to The South, or are ambivalent, then their action is understandable. On the other, they should be able to defend their actions and perhaps even provide a bit of education to the perpetually offended.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. “On the one hand, they are a business and in this to make a profit. If they believe that their customers are either opposed to The South, or are ambivalent, then their action is understandable. On the other, they should be able to defend their actions and perhaps even provide a bit of education to the perpetually offended.”

        Yes! I agree completely. I suppose it’s good that they took time to respond, at least. But I do fear people are knuckling under too easily to the Philistines!

        Liked by 1 person

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